[ExI] A Small Request

Lee Corbin lcorbin at rawbw.com
Sun Feb 10 21:06:56 UTC 2008

Stathis challenges Spike:

>> What if you found this note from someone you care about:
>> "Dad, I realised yesterday that I am Jesus Christ...I have
>> gone to the new 40 storey building in the 
>> centre of town where I will jump off the top floor..."
>> Would you resist having your son treated forcibly in the 
>> knowledge that (a) he is crazy, (b) he will certainly die as 
>> a result of his craziness, and (c) if he had a few days of 
>> antipsychotic treatment he would return to normal and be 
>> utterly aghast at what he had been about to do, and what you 
>> had been about to let him do?...Stathis Papaioannou
> Ja, tough questions indeed.
> In that case I would likely try to have him apprehended by the authorities,
> who could only hold him temporarily.

(Spike is a pragmatist)

> If he left a note, I think they can hold patients for a short time.
> Then I would likely round up my brother and Shelly's brothers,
> and take and hold him at the ranch in Oregon, against his
> will if necessary, recognizing that I would be breaking the law
> in so doing...

What is very interesting about this exchange is the degree to which
the Stathis and his ilk instinctively seize upon a society-based
solution by charging the authorities with a caring duty towards
an individual, whereas Spike and his ilk immediately forget all
about society (except for a very pragmatic initial expedient)
and instinctively provide an individual based, family-oriented solution.

When flat-out asked, "What responsibility does government
have towards the well-being of particular individuals?", the libertarian
response is "none" and the (American) liberal or socialist response
is "as much as can be afforded".

Amara in reply to Barbara Lamar compromised with

  It might be better for the ill person and the family members/friends
  if the involuntary committment process could be changed so that
  friends and family members are given a larger role and the
  random-ignorant-policeperson given a smaller role.

I would point out that the American (as opposed to, say, the 
English) reaction was *never* to have such a role for government
until the 20th century. And this change arose, I think, because of
the anonymity of urban life, when in one sense people could
become such complete individuals that they could no longer
in any way to depend on family or friends, if that was their desire.


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